Connecticut Seal

General Assembly

 

Raised Bill No. 607

February Session, 2008

 

LCO No. 2751

 

*02751_______JUD*

Referred to Committee on Judiciary

 

Introduced by:

 

(JUD)

 

AN ACT CONCERNING THE IDENTIFICATION OF CERTAIN FIREARMS AND THE CRIMINAL POSSESSION OF FIREARMS.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. Section 29-33 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2008):

(a) No person, firm or corporation shall sell, deliver or otherwise transfer any pistol or revolver to any person who is prohibited from possessing a [pistol or revolver] firearm as provided in section 53a-217c, as amended by this act.

(b) On and after October 1, 1995, no person may purchase or receive any pistol or revolver unless such person holds a valid permit to carry a pistol or revolver issued pursuant to subsection (b) of section 29-28 of the 2008 supplement to the general statutes, a valid permit to sell at retail a pistol or revolver issued pursuant to subsection (a) of section 29-28 of the 2008 supplement to the general statutes or a valid eligibility certificate for a pistol or revolver issued pursuant to section 29-36f or is a federal marshal, parole officer or peace officer.

(c) No person, firm or corporation shall sell, deliver or otherwise transfer any pistol or revolver except upon written application on a form prescribed and furnished by the Commissioner of Public Safety. Such person, firm or corporation shall insure that all questions on the application are answered properly prior to releasing the pistol or revolver and shall retain the application, which shall be attached to the federal sale or transfer document, for at least twenty years or until such vendor goes out of business. Such application shall be available for inspection during normal business hours by law enforcement officials. No sale, delivery or other transfer of any pistol or revolver shall be made unless the person making the purchase or to whom the same is delivered or transferred is personally known to the person selling such pistol or revolver or making delivery or transfer thereof or provides evidence of his identity in the form of a motor vehicle operator's license, identity card issued pursuant to section 1-1h or valid passport. No sale, delivery or other transfer of any pistol or revolver shall be made until the person, firm or corporation making such transfer obtains an authorization number from the Commissioner of Public Safety. Said commissioner shall perform the national instant criminal background check and make a reasonable effort to determine whether there is any reason that would prohibit such applicant from possessing a [pistol or revolver] firearm as provided in section 53a-217c, as amended by this act. If the commissioner determines the existence of such a reason, the commissioner shall deny the sale and no pistol or revolver shall be sold, delivered or otherwise transferred by such person, firm or corporation to such applicant.

(d) No person, firm or corporation shall sell, deliver or otherwise transfer any pistol or revolver, other than at wholesale, unless such pistol or revolver is equipped with a reusable trigger lock, gun lock or gun locking device appropriate for such pistol or revolver, which lock or device shall be constructed of material sufficiently strong to prevent it from being easily disabled and have a locking mechanism accessible by key or by electronic or other mechanical accessory specific to such lock or device to prevent unauthorized removal. No pistol or revolver shall be loaded or contain therein any gunpowder or other explosive or any bullet, ball or shell when such pistol or revolver is sold, delivered or otherwise transferred.

(e) On and after January 1, 2010, no person, firm or corporation shall sell, deliver or otherwise transfer any semiautomatic pistol at retail unless such semiautomatic pistol is designed and equipped with a microscopic array of characters that identify the make, model and serial number of the pistol in two or more places on the interior surface or internal working parts of the pistol and that are transferred by imprinting on each cartridge case when the pistol is fired, provided the Attorney General certifies that the technology used to create the imprint is available to more than one manufacturer unencumbered by any patent restrictions. For the purposes of this subsection, "semiautomatic pistol" means a pistol the operating mode of which uses the energy of the explosive in a fixed cartridge to extract a fired cartridge and chamber a fresh cartridge with each single pull of the trigger.

[(e)] (f) Upon the sale, delivery or other transfer of any pistol or revolver, the person making the purchase or to whom the same is delivered or transferred shall sign a receipt for such pistol or revolver which shall contain the name and address of such person, the date of sale, the caliber, make, model and manufacturer's number and a general description of such pistol or revolver, the identification number of such person's permit to carry pistols or revolvers, issued pursuant to subsection (b) of section 29-28 of the 2008 supplement to the general statutes, permit to sell at retail pistols or revolvers, issued pursuant to subsection (a) of said section, or eligibility certificate for a pistol or revolver, issued pursuant to section 29-36f, if any, and the authorization number designated for the transfer by the Department of Public Safety. The person, firm or corporation selling such pistol or revolver or making delivery or transfer thereof shall give one copy of the receipt to the person making the purchase of such pistol or revolver or to whom the same is delivered or transferred, shall retain one copy of the receipt for at least five years, and shall send, by first class mail, or electronically transmit, within forty-eight hours of such sale, delivery or other transfer, one copy of the receipt to the Commissioner of Public Safety and one copy of the receipt to the chief of police or, where there is no chief of police, the warden of the borough or the first selectman of the town, as the case may be, of the town in which the transferee resides.

[(f)] (g) The provisions of this section shall not apply to antique pistols or revolvers. An antique pistol or revolver, for the purposes of this section, means any pistol or revolver which was manufactured in or before 1898 and any replica of such pistol or revolver provided such replica is not designed or redesigned for using rimfire or conventional centerfire fixed ammunition except rimfire or conventional centerfire fixed ammunition which is no longer manufactured in the United States and not readily available in the ordinary channel of commercial trade.

[(g)] (h) The provisions of this section shall not apply to the sale, delivery or transfer of pistols or revolvers between (1) a federally-licensed firearm manufacturer and a federally-licensed firearm dealer, (2) a federally-licensed firearm importer and a federally-licensed firearm dealer, or (3) federally-licensed firearm dealers.

[(h)] (i) If the court finds that a violation of this section is not of a serious nature and that the person charged with such violation (1) will probably not offend in the future, (2) has not previously been convicted of a violation of this section, and (3) has not previously had a prosecution under this section suspended pursuant to this subsection, it may order suspension of prosecution. The court shall not order suspension of prosecution unless the accused person has acknowledged that he understands the consequences of the suspension of prosecution. Any person for whom prosecution is suspended shall agree to the tolling of any statute of limitations with respect to such violation and to a waiver of his right to a speedy trial. Such person shall appear in court and shall be released to the custody of the Court Support Services Division for such period, not exceeding two years, and under such conditions as the court shall order. If the person refuses to accept, or, having accepted, violates such conditions, the court shall terminate the suspension of prosecution and the case shall be brought to trial. If such person satisfactorily completes his period of probation, he may apply for dismissal of the charges against him and the court, on finding such satisfactory completion, shall dismiss such charges. If the person does not apply for dismissal of the charges against him after satisfactorily completing his period of probation, the court, upon receipt of a report submitted by the Court Support Services Division that the person satisfactorily completed his period of probation, may on its own motion make a finding of such satisfactory completion and dismiss such charges. Upon dismissal, all records of such charges shall be erased pursuant to section 54-142a. An order of the court denying a motion to dismiss the charges against a person who has completed his period of probation or terminating the participation of a defendant in such program shall be a final judgment for purposes of appeal.

[(i)] (j) Any person who violates any provision of this section shall be guilty of a class D felony, except that any person who sells, delivers or otherwise transfers a pistol or revolver in violation of the provisions of this section, knowing that such pistol or revolver is stolen or that the manufacturer's number or other mark of identification on such pistol or revolver has been altered, removed or obliterated, shall be guilty of a class B felony, and any pistol or revolver found in the possession of any person in violation of any provision of this section shall be forfeited.

Sec. 2. Section 53a-217 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2008):

(a) A person is guilty of criminal possession of [a firearm or] an electronic defense weapon when such person possesses [a firearm or] an electronic defense weapon and (1) has been convicted of a felony, (2) has been convicted as delinquent for the commission of a serious juvenile offense, as defined in section 46b-120 of the 2008 supplement to the general statutes, or (3) knows that such person is subject to (A) a restraining or protective order of a court of this state that has been issued against such person, after notice and an opportunity to be heard has been provided to such person, in a case involving the use, attempted use or threatened use of physical force against another person, or (B) a foreign order of protection, as defined in section 46b-15a, that has been issued against such person in a case involving the use, attempted use or threatened use of physical force against another person. [, (4) knows that such person is subject to a firearms seizure order issued pursuant to subsection (d) of section 29-38c after notice and an opportunity to be heard has been provided to such person, or (5) is prohibited from shipping, transporting, possessing or receiving a firearm pursuant to 18 USC 922(g)(4).] For the purposes of this section, "convicted" means having a judgment of conviction entered by a court of competent jurisdiction.

(b) Criminal possession of [a firearm or] an electronic defense weapon is a class D felony. [, for which two years of the sentence imposed may not be suspended or reduced by the court.]

Sec. 3. Section 53a-217c of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2008):

(a) A person is guilty of criminal possession of a [pistol or revolver] firearm when such person possesses a [pistol or revolver, as defined in section 29-27,] firearm and (1) has been convicted of a felony or of a violation of subsection (c) of section 21a-279 or section 53a-58, 53a-61, 53a-61a, 53a-62, 53a-63, 53a-96, 53a-175, 53a-176, 53a-178 or 53a-181d, (2) has been convicted as delinquent for the commission of a serious juvenile offense, as defined in section 46b-120 of the 2008 supplement to the general statutes, (3) has been discharged from custody within the preceding twenty years after having been found not guilty of a crime by reason of mental disease or defect pursuant to section 53a-13, (4) has been confined in a hospital for persons with psychiatric disabilities, as defined in section 17a-495, within the preceding twelve months by order of a probate court, (5) knows that such person is subject to (A) a restraining or protective order of a court of this state that has been issued against such person, after notice and an opportunity to be heard has been provided to such person, in a case involving the use, attempted use or threatened use of physical force against another person, or (B) a foreign order of protection, as defined in section 46b-15a, that has been issued against such person in a case involving the use, attempted use or threatened use of physical force against another person, (6) knows that such person is subject to a firearms seizure order issued pursuant to subsection (d) of section 29-38c after notice and an opportunity to be heard has been provided to such person, (7) is prohibited from shipping, transporting, possessing or receiving a firearm pursuant to 18 USC 922(g)(4), or (8) is an alien illegally or unlawfully in the United States. For the purposes of this section, "convicted" means having a judgment of conviction entered by a court of competent jurisdiction.

(b) Criminal possession of a [pistol or revolver] firearm is a class D felony.

Sec. 4. Subsection (c) of section 29-36k of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2008):

(c) Any person who fails to transfer or surrender any such pistols and revolvers and other firearms as provided in this section shall be subject to the penalty provided for in section [53a-217 or] 53a-217c, as amended by this act.

This act shall take effect as follows and shall amend the following sections:

Section 1

October 1, 2008

29-33

Sec. 2

October 1, 2008

53a-217

Sec. 3

October 1, 2008

53a-217c

Sec. 4

October 1, 2008

29-36k(c)

Statement of Purpose:

To facilitate the linking of used cartridge cases to the firearm that fired them by requiring the microstamping of semiautomatic pistols and to make all the disqualifiers for the possession of a handgun applicable to the possession of a long gun.

[Proposed deletions are enclosed in brackets. Proposed additions are indicated by underline, except that when the entire text of a bill or resolution or a section of a bill or resolution is new, it is not underlined.]